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The Phuture Phoenix experience begins in the fall of each school year when trained students from UWGB, known as role models, visit participating Title I fifth-grade classrooms in the Green Bay area.
On Phuture Phoenix Day, approximately 1,000 fifth-graders are divided into groups of five to seven by their teachers and matched with two UWGB role models.
The students also take part in several special learning events coordinated by UWGB faculty and staff just for Phuture Phoenix Day.
The aim of establishing these personal connections between the elementary students and the UWGB role models is to demystify the university for the fifth-graders and to instill the idea that a postsecondary education is an attainable goal.
The second major component of the Phuture Phoenix Program is maintaining the connection with the fifth-graders by creating a UWGB presence on the campuses of the four feeder middle schools to which they progress.
These may include a career fair on the UWGB campus, a session on applying to college, and perhaps even some partnerships with existing programs, such as Upward Bound or TRIO.
In addition to these educational sessions, Phuture Phoenix creates ongoing and more intensive connections between UWGB college students and the children in the public schools.
The Phellows have established Phuture Phoenix Clubs, where well-trained UWGB students are available on the middle and high school campuses.
As an additional measure of support, the education department at UWGB collaborated with Phuture Phoenix to offer from 1 to 3 credits to students across majors who work in the program and are willing to offer extended contact hours to the middle and high school students.
They are instructed and supervised by UWGB faculty so that their experience can be used to enhance their preparation for teaching.
Many UWGB students--along with the director of the Phuture Phoenix Program, the superintendent of the Green Bay Area Public Schools, and United Way workers--have attended the forums.
In addition, members of the UWGB faculty and staff have initiated longitudinal research to investigate the long-term impact of the program by following a group of participating students and a sample of students not exposed to the program.